There has been much discussion lately over the term "photo-match."
At MeiGray, which partners with the National Hockey League to direct the NHL-MGG Game-Worn Jersey Authentication Program, a photo-match is an exact photo of the exact game-worn jersey. No ifs, ands or buts.
If a jersey in question isn't conclusively determined to be the exact one pictured, it isn't a photo-match.
How to tell? When it comes to game-worn jerseys, hockey and football jerseys are the easiest to match because of the stick marks, grass stains, blood stains, board burns, repairs and other heavy use that is evident from the two most physical of our major professional sports. But in our partnerships with MLB's Texas Rangers and NBA's Dallas Mavericks we have photo-matched many a baseball and basketball jersey because of significant pilling, unique letter and number placement, and the individual characteristics that make game-worn jerseys like finger-prints.
Example: We took two Dirk Nowitzki jerseys that were worn in one game and were able to tell which was worn in the first half and which was worn in the second half (Dirk changes at halftime into a fresh jersey) because his name was sewn differently on the two jerseys. We took possession of both immediately after one record-setting game.
A photo-match is NOT a picture that represents a jersey style.
A photo-match is NOT a picture that represents what a game-worn jersey looked like before its use.
To better serve collectors and continue our belief in 100% authenticity without opinions or grades or other nebulous concepts that we believe misdirect collectors, MeiGray today announced an authenticating agreement with Getty Images that will enable game-worn jerseys collectors to acquire enhanced photographic letters of authentication.
Under the new working agreement with the world’s pre-eminent sports photography studio, MeiGray has been authorized to download dated game-worn jersey images that conclusively authenticate game-worn jerseys sold by MeiGray under its MGG and MeiGray Vintage labels, and for the NHL-MGG Game-Worn Jersey Authentication Program.
These enhanced photographic LOAs will be printed on high-quality 8 X 10 photo-paper stock. They will conclusively “photo-match” the jersey purchased and will include the NHL-MGG Authentication Program number, the date of the photo, and the location from which it was taken.
We believe this will take photo-matching to a new level, and authentication to a new level. We believe collectors deserve more than quick opinions. Collectors deserve detailed authentication that provides facts.
We hope you agree,